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August 01, 1986 - Image 76

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1986-08-01

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

LOOKING BACK

THE
AMAZING
MARKET
PLACE

We've de-classified the name of our
huge classified section to call it what
it really is: THE AMAZING MARKET-
PLACE of budget-priced saleables and
services. For information how you can
advertise to almost everyone in your
community, call 354-6060.

Alterations

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THE JEWISH NEWS

76

Friday, August 1, 1986

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

Entebbe Victim's Son Remembers Mother

Since she had dual citizenship
— British as well as Israeli, our
family in Israel asked the British
Embassy in Tel Aviv to help ar-
range for official British inter-
vention. On Sunday after noon,
July 4 (after the successful rescue
mission of which, however, she
yet knew nothing), a British dip-
lomat in Kampala visited her.
She asked for non-hospital food
and he promised he would bring
it later. When, accompanied by
his wife, he returned at 10 that
night, she had disappeared, and
no one at the hospital was willing
or able to provide an explanation.

DANIEL BLOCH

Special to The Jewish News

M

y mother was a hostage
who never returned
alive.
Her name was Dora Bloch and
she was 74 when she was brutally
murdered by terrorists, exactly
10 years ago, in a lonely hospital
room in Kampala, the capital of
Uganda, on the orders of Idi
Amin, the mass killer who then
ruled the country.
A direct line connects her fate
with the 'cruel murder of Leon
Klinghoffer by PLO terrorists on
the Achille Lauro last year.
She had been one of the 105
men, women and children on
board an Air France plane that
was hijacked by Arab and Ger-
man radical terrorists while on
its way from Tel Aviv to Paris.
They diverted the plane to
Entebbe Airport, outside Kam-
pala, Wher e they knew they had a
friend inIdi Amin. There, Ugan-
dan soldiers and police joined the
terrorists in guarding, taunting
and threatening the hostages
while their lives were being
negotiated.
Their only crime was that they
were citizens of Israel. They
spent a week at Entebbe, waver-
ing between hope and despair,
between the brink of death and
the faint chance of redemption.
And on July 4 it came, Operation
Thunderbolt, the longest-range
commando raid in history.
Just as America was celebrat-
ing its Centennial, a small elite
force of Israel's crack commandos
and paratroopers carried out the
famous rescue mission at
Entebbe, to universal rejoicing in
Israel and the admiration of the
entire free world.

But she had been murdered
that day, as an act of revenge by
Idi Amin.
We do not know if my mother
was aware before her death of the
rescue mission - and the survival
of my brother, who had accom-
panied her on that fateful flight.
But there is no doubt she would
have approved of it even if she
knew it might not save her life.
For she grew up in a family tradi-
tion that put pioneering values
above personal considerations.
Her father, an early (1882)
Zionist immigrant from Russia to
Palestine, was a founder of
Rishon le-Zion, the first modern
town by the new Jewish pioneers
in their ancestral homeland.
Though he also organized the
first group of young defenders of
the New Jewish villages against
Bedouin marauders, he firmly be-
lieved in Arab-Jewish coopera-
tion. He had Arab partners in two
joint ventures: in an olive oil fac-
tory at Lod, and later in a phar-
macy in Jaffa.
My mother continued that tra-
dition of care for Jewish security
and openness with our Arab
neighbors. She believed in peace-
ful co-existence, but PLO ter-

Daniel Bloch is Counselor for
Labor Affairs at the Israeli
Embassy in Washington.

Dora Bloch

rorists and their state supporters
and sponsors put an end to her
dreams.
Nearly 10 years had to pass,
and many more innocent lives
lost to terrorist depredations,
until the free world, led by the
United States, began to realize
that only bold initiatives can
make life more difficult for ter-
rorists, and exact a price from the
regimes that sponsor them.
Today, as the anniversary of
her death coincides with the cele-
bration of America's Indepen-
dence Day, symbolized further by
the Centennial of the Statue of
Liberty, we must know that free-
dom and peace demand an active
defense, without which we will
all become hostages of the
enemies of our cherished demo-
cratic values.
It seemed as if the Entebbe op-
eration was a gift offered to
demonstrate on America's Inde-
pendence Day just what the
Founding Fathers really had in-
tended 200 years before: eternal
vigilance before tyranny and re-
solute determination in the face
of aggression.
The commandos rescued the
French crew and all the hostages,
except for my mother. She was
missing. At the time, the family
believed she was still alive. We
thought Idi Amin might hold her
hostage and demand from Israel
an apology and compensation for
his humiliation. We could not
conceive that anyone would kill
an old woman.

Some weeks later, we learned
that that was exactly what had
happened, and then we realized
that without the rescue mission
all the other hostages might well
have suffered the same fate. But
it was only three years later that
we learned the tragic circum-
stances of her death.
After Idi Amin's fall in 1979,
our family received permission
from the new Ugandan govern-
ment to bring her body back to
Israel. My brother went to Kam-
pala on that mission and there
discovered the truth.
On the Thursday before the re-
scue mission, Ugandan soldiers
permitted my mother to be taken,
under guard, to a Kampala hospi-
tal for a procedure to remove a
piece of food stuck in her throat.
She could have been released the
next day but, tragic irony, the
doctor thought she would be safer
at the hospital.

Neo-Nazis Print
Waldheim Photo

New York — Kurt Waldheim is
identified as a member of Hitler's
"Brownshirt" stormtroopers in a
1940 court document published
by a neo-Nazi newspaper in West
Germany this year. The docu-
ment is the first showing Wal-
dheim's Nazi affiliations that
bears his photograph. Wal-
dheim's passport-size picture ap-
pears in the right-hand corner of
the document which bears his
name at the top.
The document, Waldheim's
"personal questionnaire" from
his 1940 application for a court
position, was published on April
4 of this year in Munich by the
neo Nazi National Zeitung news-
paper.
Waldheim has repeatedly de-
nied membership in Nazi organ-
izations.

-

Jewish Grants
For Education

Washington (JTA) — The
Foundation of Jewish Studies
awarded a series of major grants
to encourage adult Jewish learn-
ing in the United States and Is-
rael. The amount of the grants
was not disclosed.
Foundation officials said the
awards include the first com-
prehensive curriculum handbook
on American Judaism, the second
installment of support for trans-
lation of the Talmud by Rabbi
Adin Steinsaltz and grants for
local programs to educate Jewish
leaders, non-traditional adult
Jews and persons with special
needs.

Hebrew U. Honors
Eight Students

New York — The first eight
American students selected for
the new Raoul Wallenberg
Scholars Program at the Hebrew
University of Jerusalem will be
introduced Monday at a reception
in New York.

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